Many months have past since my last post and there were times I wondered about writing again. Perhaps I could write about my hair growth, my beloved dog Maple or my new lifestyle as a Flexigan (Flexible Vegan); but never have I managed to actually put my thoughts into texts- until now.
With Dan in Spain, I was staring at TV alone this evening, aimlessly flicking through the channels to see if there’s anything worth a watch. Then something sparked in my head, making me feel curious about my own blog. How is it doing?
Scrolling down on my blog, mostly about cancer, I asked myself questions. So is this the end of the story? Am I all better now and not a care in the world?
Like almost every story, there is an epilogue. The story goes on. It’s just not my “main” story anymore, which I am grateful for.
I’ve been prescribed Tamoxifen,
a type of hormone medication. It is all for the preventative measure, so I was told to take it for the next five years or even ten years after the chemotherapy. Thinking that it would be the same as contraception pills, I didn’t expect any side effects- but soon I realised they existed.
The main side effects I’ve been experiencing are irregular menstrual cycles with extremely heavy discharge. It’s really annoying not to know when to expect my next cycle then to go through a really thin and heavy one. Naturally it makes me feel anxious to go out during that period, so I just tend to stay home until its end. In addition, I often get confused whether it’s PMS or just me being weird when I feel low and irritable. Sometimes it feels like PMS lasts much over a week with a massive build up, then the cycle comes with a grand opening(?)!
Apologies if it makes you feel uncomfortable… but imagine how uncomfortable I would be! Yuk! I really cannot wait to stop this medication.
My hair has grown back.
My hair generally grows quite quick, and I had it cut every few months to keep it tidy; so it has taken almost 18 months to grow back to what it was before the chemotherapy.
It’s been fun trying out different hairstyles with various lengths. Quite a lot of times I didn’t know what to do with it, but kind words from friends and family made me feel less awkward about it.
I have to admit, styling was much easier when I didn’t have any hair. I also enjoyed wearing a variety of hats with the excuse. Funnily, I find styling with a hat more difficult with my hair at its normal length than with no hair at all!
Nonetheless, I really appreciate my hair, and the look and warmth that it gives. Hair gives lavishness to your appearance. I have learned that in the past one and half year.
The mastectomy also has left a lasting effect on me.
My left shoulder hasn’t been the same since the operation. Thankfully I can still go climbing, but I am a little more prone to sports injuries than before due to the huge imbalance between my shoulders. I have already had a mild issue in my left shoulder from climbing and it’s been ever so slow to recover.
You may not find it as frustrating as I do, but it makes me feel sad to realise how physically limited I am because of my metal pinned hip and disrupted chest & shoulder. I need to put in an awful lot of effort NOT to have set backs and prevent injuries. Looking on the bright side though, I am well enough to get back on my sport which is great. I try to remind me of that fact often.
Moving to Bristol did us both good.
As much as I loved the Lincoln city and people in it, Dan and I found the majority of our time there extremely challenging. So, moving to a new city meant a fresh start for us, with the past behind us.
Although we do miss our friends in Lincoln, we are much happier in our new city for a few reasons. We have our evenings and weekends back, and I have much more physical & mental capacity than I used to. We’ve also found a good church to be part of and a climbing community to be round.
Now, I would also love to talk about how my lifestyle has changed and why I have become a Flexigan but I will save that for another time. I suppose I need something to return to this blog for.
The story about my cancer may be forgotten,
just like that about my accident did, but I will live on. That’s what people do after all. I have two invisible medals that I wear with pride for surviving two life-changing events, but I won’t dwell on them too long. Instead, I will look forward to my future in hope and around for those in need- whether they be people, animals or the nature. And try to live on, happily ever after.
Thank you for reading, and bless you today.